Q&A with 3 powerful women about their mental fitness and 150lb weight loss

Q&A with 3 powerful women about their mental fitness and 150lb weight loss

Our most recent meetup featured three powerful and incredible women who have changed their lives.

They have lost over 150lbs EACH BUT...

....their individual stories are SO MUCH MORE than weight loss.

It is about...

  • a commitment they made to themselves
  • perseverance
  • inner strength
  • learning to love yourself and put yourself first

Along the way, they built new relationships with food, themselves and of course, on Instagram! 


Q & A

if you were not able to attend or maybe want to review the information, the event was recorded and you can watch the video below. Warning: have your tissues ready because the rawness and vulnerability is a real tear-jerker... 



Don’t have time to watch the video right away? No problem! We have summarized responses and takeaways below! Keep in mind that we have largely paraphrased what was said - so be sure to watch the video when you get a chance, to hear these powerful messages from these incredible women themselves!

SwitchGrocery Meetup Q1 - If we take you back to the beginning of your weight loss journey, what did you feel? (emotionally, physically)


  • I was 344 pounds, depressed, and at the end of my fertility journey
  • As a result, I went on year long “binge of self-hate”
  • I knew my body had reached its limits: chronic pain, borderline high blood pressure … even self-grooming was challenging
  • Asked to be put on list for bariatric surgery
  • In the meantime, went back to following a ketogenic way of eating. Instead of surgery just kept going. And here were are… 170 pounds later!


  • Always find it hard to answer this question
  • That was just my life


  • In February of 2017, I was 412 pounds
  • When you are 412 pounds, to survive, you have to learn to ignore who you look like
  • When I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s and diabetes, I decided it was time to make big changes
  • What was the difference this time? I STOPPED LOOKING FOR THE QUICK FIX

SwitchGrocery Meetup Q2 Resilience...mental game… how much of your journey do you attribute to mental fitness and how did your work on yourself emotionally and mentally through the journey?


  • Weight loss is 99% a mental journey
  • You need to do it day-in and day-out and enforce new habits
  • Must make your “why” bigger than your “want”
  • You have to get uncomfortable


  • I had to get used to saying “no” to myself, get in the habit of saying “I don't need this” - you'll never regret something you didn't eat
  • I don't feel so emotionally tied to food anymore, or that I need it to complete something
  • I have regular check-ins with myself


  • I suffer from anxiety and lots of negative self talk - I've learned that that person in my head will always be in my head - she is not going to go away. I just need to stop listening to her

SwitchGrocery Keto Paleo Meetup Q&A 3 - How do you manage being around people who do not follow a low carb or keto lifestyle?


  • I learned what foods made me feel good, and use that as my go to
  • I don't eat grains not just because of the low carb, but because of the way grains make me feel and the resulting inflammation.
  • My family encomepases different lifestyles (vegan, keto, regular) and it is important for me to make foods that everyone can enjoy - foods that cut across lifestyles (Mina spoke about a low carb, vegan, zucchini lasagna with cashew ricotta - Mina can we come over!?)


  • Volunteer to host or offer to bring something, so you know that you have something you can eat
  • Helpful to go in with a plan
  • In the beginning, it definelly can be hard to navigate and to talk to people about it


  • I don't even look at sugary, processed foods as “food” anymore
  • I am not tempted anymore, as I have stayed away from them
  • Always have snacks in purse, just in case


SwitchGrocery Keto Paleo Meetup Q&A 4 - If/when you choose to go off the lifestyle, how do you turn that around?


  • I stay low carb, but don't count calories
  • Helpful to just remember your goals and your “why”
  • Ask for help, if needed.
  • Do what you have to do, and move on.


  • Know that the bloating, the number on the scale, etc, that that will pass
  • Don't do anything extreme, to try and compensate


  • When going back, go back to basics: no treats, just simple foods that make your body feel good
  • Sometimes, it involves being a little tough with yourself.
  • I have respect for this way of eating. Respect for my body.

SwitchGrocery Keto Paleo Meetup Q&A 5 - To Amanda: Can you talk a bit about the carnivore lifestyle?


  • In January of last year, my period just stopped
  • At that time, I was also reading and learning more about the carnivore diet and the concept of “meat heals”
  • That summer, I got really sick with a rash and doctors were unable to help me
  • I decided to try carnivore for a week and my rash went away - so I just kept going!
  • I feel great and like the simplicity of it. Also got my period back!
  • Carnivore for me is not about losing weight (I haven’t lost any additional weight since), but about healing

SwitchGrocery Keto Meetup Q - What are some tips to help people who are wanting to get healthier? Some smaller steps they could take?


  • Experiment, cut out sugar, and eat more mindfully
  • Doesn't matter what lifestyle you choose to do, just find what works for YOU and do it every day. Consistency is key.


  • Stop looking for that quick fix. Take your time - what really does make you feel good?
  • Then consistency. Learn to listen to YOU and what you need.
  • Reach out to the community - someone will help you


  • Create a healthy relationship with food - it makes a huge difference!

SwitchGrocery Keto Meetup Q7 - To Mina: You were on the Marilyn Denis Show with Jillian Michaels, can you talk about your experience?


  • I had an unbelievable experience
  • What I remember, is how nice both of them were during commercial break. Jillian Michaels took my hand and told me how powerful what I did was
  • The negativity [around the keto diet] didn't bother me - my experience was fantastic and that is what I take away.

Psst… you can watch this segment here (https://www.marilyn.ca/Fitness/video/How-to-stay-motivated-to-lose-those-final-pounds-vid1582247)

SwitchGrocery Keto Meetup - Q8 - To Sarah: Can you talk about how you dealt/deal with anxiety through this weight loss journey, and how your support system has changed?


  • I have suffered from anxiety since childhood. My anxiety can run from feelings of impending doom, to full blow panic attacks
  • Looking back,I was using food to soothe
  • When I started keto, I knew that I had to start facing these feelings too - I had to feel these feelings
  • Instead of soothing with foods, I developed new and different ways of coping: partner support through talking and sharing, meditation, breathing videos, circle of concern versus control
  • I had to get used to feeling uncomfortable

SwitchGrocery Keto Meetup Q9 - Can you talk a little about the middle road of the journey?


  • It can be difficult and feel a little deflating when your goal weight may reflect others starting weight
  • But that is when it is “mind over matter” - just keep going
  • Every step will get you where you need to go


  • Stalls are the part of the journey when you have to do the mental weight loss
  • Weight loss is a side effect of a healthy body - sometimes in these stalls, your body is doing things that may not be reflected on the scale, but that are also so important


  • As you get closer to maintenance, you realize that you will have to always work on it. You will always have to choose health
  • Stop looking at the long road ahead, and work on every single day

SwitchGrocery Q9 Keto Meetup - Long term view of the lifestyle?


  • Sugar-free for life
  • On and off tracking
  • No plans to go off right now - I think it’s sustainable.


  • I’m happy where I am
  • I do not track - I follow my body and what it needs


  • I have to track - I find it hard to eat intuitively
  • I do not mind tracking

Top three tips for keto/low carb lifestyle?:

Amanda's_diaryofashrinkingmommy_ThreeTips_for_keto-low-carb-lifestyle_SwitchGrocery - Keep it simple, Electrolytes, Do not compare yourself


Mina's_mindfulofmina_ThreeTips_for_keto-low-carb-lifestyle_SwitchGrocery - Eat what makes your body feel good, Move, Remove negativity from your life, whether it’s you or someone else


Sarah's_ketocuteeh_ThreeTips_for_keto-low-carb-lifestyle_SwitchGrocery - Consistency is key, Keep it simple, Be patient


Join our Meetup Group

We have an incredible Meetup group in the GTA Canada where we come together to learn and grow. Would love to see you there. Join our SwitchGrocery Keto and Paleo Toronto Meetup Group

Link: https://www.meetup.com/SwitchGrocery-Keto-Paleo-Meetups/


The 3 incredible women...


Be sure to follow each of these women, as they continue on their journey!

 Amanda @diaryofashrinkingmommy  

After her first pregnancy, Amanda weighed 385 pounds. With the help of a local weight loss coach, Amanda lost a significant amount of weight, which she then regained during her second pregnancy. After her second child, she tried to lose the weight the same way but was not achieving similar results. Through readings and seeking out information, Amanda found her way to a ketogenic diet and then subsequently a carnivore lifestyle. She has now lost over 200 pounds! She also describes an incredible mental transformation and is known for her infamous walks and sunsets!


 Mina @mindful_of_mina

 A mother of two daughters. In 2016, Mina was diagnosed with both Hashimoto's disease (an autoimmune disease) and Type 2 diabetes. Mina was 412 pounds at that time. In 2017, Mina decided to take matters into her own hands and embarked on what she calls “a journey of mindfulness”. She initially started with Whole30, to help find out what foods make her body feel good. Mina then gravitated towards a low carb and mostly dairy free way of eating, Mina has lost over 175 pounds and is still going strong, eating and moving in ways that make her body happy.


 Sarah @keto.cute_eh

Is known for her raw genuineness, openness, and fierce nail game. As a self-proclaimed sugar addict, Sarah describes herself as being overweight her whole life and as a classic “yo-yo dieter”. Sarah has lost over 170 pounds through a low carb and ketogenic lifestyle. Sara shared that her journey is so much more than weight loss - she has gained “a life that gives me joy”.






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